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Old 05-26-2016, 05:38 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Updated (May 2016) Recommended Dry Cat Food List

This isn't a complete list, but I've included as many quality foods as I could find. That way if you live in an area where you only have access to a limited number of foods, you should still have an option listed here. All foods are for cats unless otherwise specified. Often, dog food of the same brand will work just as well, make sure to read the label first though.

If you haven't yet, make sure you read the https://www.hedgehogcentral.com/forum...nutrition.html, and if you're still curious, take a look at the https://www.hedgehogcentral.com/forum...ion-guide.html for more in depth information.

The individual foods listed here all meet the criteria suggested by the above stickies: 35% or lower protein, low (8-20%) fat content, named protein sources at the top of the ingredients list, quality vegetable ingredients, or at least not too many of one kind, and few or no recalls in the past 5 years.

I'll list off some top brands first, and then I'll have individual foods categorized by fat content. Most hedgehogs do well with an average fat content around 10-15%, but that varies depending on how active your hedgehog is, what he or she is built like, and a few other variables. You may need to play around with your mix to get an optimal fat content specialized for your individual hedgehog. I recommend mixing two or three foods together and adjusting the ratio as needed.

Foods from these companies can be considered "quality" by the standards set by the forum. Check individual flavors for fat and protein content before selecting them, but these companies are currently trustworthy:
Acana
Blue Buffalo*
By Nature
Chicken Soup for the Soul
Fromm*
Go!^
Halo
I and Love and You*
Merrick*
Nature's Logic (very high protein, very high quality, similar to a raw diet)
Now Fresh^
Orijen (high protein, whole prey food. The dog foods have lower protein)
Simply Nourish (Petsmart brand)
Solid Gold
Wellness*
Wild Calling!
Wysong
ZiwiPeak (air dried, over 20% fat)


*= Recent recall on food or treats. No brand on the list has had over 3 recalls in the past 5 years.
^= Owned by Petcurean, who had a history of recalls until recently.
(Stella and Chewy is not listed due to a recent history of recalls)



Foods listed below have all been individually checked by me for quality and guideline compliance. Brands are separated by line, and commas indicate a new flavor of food within that brand, or another line that brand carries.

Individual foods that are less than or equal to 35% protein, and 8-14% fat:
Blue Buffalo Weight Control, Freedom line
Chicken Soup Cat Grain Free Salmon and Legumes Limited Ingredient, Weight and Mature Care
Halo Spot's Stew Grain Free Healthy Weight line, Senior Cat Formula
I and Love and You Naked Essentials line
Merrick Limited Ingredient line
Now Fresh Grain Free Senior Cat
Simply Nourish Indoor Cat Food Turkey and Oatmeal or Duck and Oatmeal
Solid Gold Katz-N-Flocken, Winged Tiger, Moon Shadow, Fit as a Fiddle, Furrever Young
Wellness Complete Health Healthy Weight, Senior, Indoor, Indoor Salmon and Whitefish
Wysong Anergen, Vegan (vegan diet not recommended)


Individual Foods that are less than or equal to 35% protein, and 15-17% fat:
Blue Buffalo Sensitive Stomach, Indoor Health, Healthy Aging
By Nature Ocean Whitefish Cat, all dog foods
Fromm Four Star Salmon, Chicken a la Veg, Duck a la Veg, Salmon a la Veg
Go! Sensitivity and Shine line
Halo Spot's Stew Vigor line, Sensitive Cat line
Solid Gold Nature's Harmony, Moonlight Prowl
Wild Calling Western Plains Stampede Cat line (Rabbit, Salmon, Turkey)
Wysong Vitality, Uretic, Nurture with Quail, Geriatrix


Individual Foods that are less than or equal to 35% protein, and 18-20% fat:
All Acana foods
Blue Buffalo Healthy Living
Chicken Soup Adult Cat
Fromm Beef, Game Bird
Go! Daily Defence
Halo Spot's Stew Indoor Cat Chicken or Fish
Now Fresh Grain Free Fish, Adult Food


Low Fat Cat Foods (For mixing to cut a higher fat food down, or for overweight hedgies):
Blue Buffalo Weight Control (9%)
Chicken Soup Weight and Mature Care (9%)
Solid Gold Fit as a Fiddle (8%)
Wellness Complete Health Healthy Weight (9%)


High(er) Quality Global Food Brands (determined by looking at reviews and consumer complaints, I don't have any personal experience here):
Australia:
Canidae
Earthborn
Holistic Select
Taste of the Wild
Wellness

UK:
Addiction
Bravo
Hound and Gatos
Soulistic
Weruva

Mid-ish Europe:
Addiction
Soulistic
Wellness
Weruva
Ziwi Peak

Eastern Europe:
Hills
Wellness

South America:
Hills (better than the other stuff available)

South (Thanks to PeregrinTook for compiling this!):
Acana
Orijen
Hills Adult Hairball Control, Indoor Cat, Adult Light, Adult Oral Care, Adult Sensitive Skin, Adult Sensitive Stomach, Adult Cat Sterilised, Mature Adult 7+ Light, Mature Adult Active Longevity 7+ Chicken
Royal Canin formulas with meat first (especially Indoor 7 Adult)
Eukanuba formulas with meat first


References:
http://www.dogfoodadvisor.com/
http://www.dogfoodadvisor.com/dog-food-recalls/
http://www.fda.gov/animalveterinary/...lswithdrawals/
http://www.petfoodreviews.com.au/dry...-dry-cat-food/
http://consciouscat.net/2012/03/22/t...-for-your-cat/
And Individual Brand Websites
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Last edited by Lilysmommy; 06-23-2016 at 06:55 PM.
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Old 05-26-2016, 08:13 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Are those figures based on dry matter?
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Old 05-26-2016, 06:03 PM   #3 (permalink)
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They are indeed. I didn't convert the Nature's Logic or ZiwiPeak because they're dried raw instead of kibble but the sources are safe if anyone is interested in them.
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Old 05-30-2016, 03:14 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default concerns with the blue buffalo freedom line

I have some concerns with this brand line. it appears peas are very heavily used in the mix, split up many times....as is potatoes even. As well it also includes cellulose.

@FinnickHog even stated why two of these three concerns where bad here:

https://www.hedgehogcentral.com/forum...-cat-food.html

thoughts on this line? what exactly makes the blue buffalo freedome line good? (mainly talking about the chicken and chicken indoor weight version of the freedom line). I figure peas and potatoes as filler isn't an end all, my main concerns really is the cellulose. the basic guide even black lists it.

Last edited by upbeatanime; 05-30-2016 at 03:22 AM.
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Old 05-30-2016, 04:50 AM   #5 (permalink)
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It's on there because so many people use it and have access to it, and it's a decent quality mid-price, mid-range food. I personally dislike all of the Blue Buffalo foods for a multitude of reasons, but I won't get into that. Different people have different budgets, so I don't want to scare anyone away from it.

I'm only seeing potatoes split once, as potatoes and potato starch. And peas are split once as peas and pea protein in the beef and lamb recipes, but not the chicken recipe. Nutro split more than 3 ingredients multiple times, including proteins.

In the Nutro post, I say it was left out because of the excessive splitting, but mention that it's not as terrible as many other foods. This applies with Blue Buffalo as well, but they were just above the cut off line while Nutro was just below. I had to set a limit on how lenient I would be with ingredients somewhere, and it's definitely higher than some people would put it.

I'm not seeing the cellulose listed in this food anywhere, can you link where you saw it?

What I've been using as a reference:
http://bluebuffalo.com/natural-dog-f...hicken-recipe/
http://bluebuffalo.com/natural-dog-f...t-lamb-recipe/
http://bluebuffalo.com/natural-dog-f...t-beef-recipe/

I hope that helps!
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Last edited by FinnickHog; 05-30-2016 at 04:51 AM. Reason: had rough notes beside urls, edited them out
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Old 05-30-2016, 08:56 AM   #6 (permalink)
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I wish this list was out before I already exchanged food! My breeder has my boy on generic Aldi UK dry cat food. Obviously I'm not impressed with the brand and will transition him. I bought a small bag of Purina Go Cat as it is in the acceptable range for protein and fat while also not containing any ingredients from the sea (fish, fish oils, seaweed, etc.) which is hard to find in my area. Will this be ok for now? I also plan on feeding him fresh meat and vegetables. I'm not really familiar enough with UK brands yet but they mostly contain fish and loads of grains. I don't remember seeing the ones listed at Pets at Home but I also want seeking them out.
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Old 05-30-2016, 09:34 AM   #7 (permalink)
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With ingredient splicing, location on the list can be very important.
The ingredients are listed in order of weight before being cooked into the final product.
The concern with splicing ingredients come when we see the same ingredient in different forms listed high up on the list. This easily could be a way that food companies can disguise the main ingredients.
So, the things we look with ingredient splicing are how high is the first listing of that ingredient, where is the second and so on. How many ingredients are between them. If you really want to split hairs on the issue, look at if the ingredients are wet or dry as well as all the ingredients in between.

Just an example if chicken is listed first, them corn gluten, peas, corn meal
Chicken first is good, but has a lot of moisture that will get cooked out.
Corn gluten, it weighs less than the uncooked chicken. This doesn't contain a lot of moisture.
Peas, still contains a decent amount of moisture.
Corn meal, essentially no moisture.

Talking those ingredients in the raw form, not been cooked out, and weigh them. That dictates the other of them as they are listed. If you add all the corn in the food it could add up to outweigh good or better ingredients.

It's ultimately an issue of how nitpicky you want to be.
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Old 05-30-2016, 07:52 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hoggly View Post
I'm not really familiar enough with UK brands yet but they mostly contain fish and loads of grains. I don't remember seeing the ones listed at Pets at Home but I also want seeking them out.
My local pets at home stocks wellness, which is not under the uk recommended brands but is listed as recommended for other countries, so that might be worth you checking out if you are struggling
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Old 05-31-2016, 12:25 AM   #9 (permalink)
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http://bluebuffalo.com/natural-cat-f...indoor-recipe/


perhaps the dog food version would be better....assuming the kibbles aren't crazy huge.

dog food version doesn't have it, but it also has only 24% protein.....would this not be on the low side? (I think the cat food mix would be great without the cellulose.....dog food clearly isn't quite the same mix without like i wished for either....ahh well, almost like they aren't made for hedgehogs :P)

Last edited by upbeatanime; 05-31-2016 at 12:29 AM.
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Old 05-31-2016, 12:38 AM   #10 (permalink)
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also you said you dislike blue Buffalo yourself. You also seem to have done a ton of research yourself as well. If you don't mind, letting me know what you personally recommend? The food i linked happen to be the best i found till i saw it had cellulose. But second opinions always help. Hope you would be some kind? I just got two hedgehogs, My first hedgie died two years ago, I got her in middle school and was foolish to believe that spikes delight was the "one true answer" to hedgehog food at the time and not till i started research a few days ago realized it's not even that good for hedgehogs. (I am glad i went with the pro-diet for the hedgie and it didn't have most of the bad ingredients the other spikes delight formulas have.)
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